Our programs are tailor-made for the specific needs of the communities we work with, giving children and youth the opportunity to develop intellectually as well as creatively and socially
Young Focus’ “DNA” is all about education: educating children all the way from preschool to college. Young Focus believes that education is the most effective way to end poverty in a child’s life.
Different programs meet the many needs children experience in poverty. The approach depends on their age, their history, their capabilities and the scope of the family’s needs.
See the programs below that address the different needs.
Child Care PLUS / Early Childhood Education
Young Focus’ early childhood education program is for children aged 3 – 5 years old. The main objective is to provide quality education which helps the child’s social/emotional, physical and cognitive development. It also provides them with nutrition, life skills, play and basic education.
Almost 300 children aged 3 – 4 attend Young Focus classes in our preschool daily. Another 125 five year olds are enrolled in kindergartens at the local schools, which is compulsory. Young Focus provides school materials, books, as well as uniforms for the 5 year olds, and there are extra educational activities on Saturdays. They also receive meals and nutrition training for parents, life skills, play and basic education.
School sponsorship for elementary, high school and college students
For students aged 6 to 20+, Young Focus provides school fees, uniforms, books and other school materials. These are items which are required by the local schools, but families often can’t afford them. In addition, Young Focus runs compulsory tutorials for all sponsored students in the program at the Student Center, which has a computer room, a library, classrooms and recreational areas for students to use.
Financial constraints, as well as educational and social support limitations are the main barriers for children in Tondo wanting to complete their education. Young Focus provides the necessary support for students and their families, whilst also offering after school activities where students can participate in writing classes, arts and music lessons and dance groups, building students’ confidence and providing a space for them to grow as individuals. Compulsory tuition classes are held at the Student Center.
Once Young Focus students graduate from college, Young Focus uses its network of companies and contacts to support the graduates in finding a job. Young Focus college graduates (Young Professionals) manage their own group and activities, with support from Young Focus staff. The alumni meet regularly and become excellent role models for their peers, and act as mentors for the (younger) students. They also prove that breaking away from the cycle of poverty is possible in their community.
(Part of Catch-UP: a special program for school drop-outs)
This program focuses on children who have dropped out of elementary school due to poverty and a lack of educational and social support. Young Focus provides tutorials for these children for 1 year before re-enrolling them into the local schools, and works with the families to solve any problems that might get in the way of the children completing their education.
Love2Learn students are aged 8 – 15 and due to personal, family or financial reasons, have stopped going to school. Young Focus runs daily classes for these children where they are brought up to speed with their peers so they can re-enroll in a regular school. As well as these daily classes, Young Focus also works with the parents to instill the importance of education and motivate them to support their children in completing school. The Love2Learn students can also take part in all Young Focus extra-curricular activities.
(Part of Catch-UP: a special program for school drop-outs)
YoUNgLI (Young Unlimited) program works with the most vulnerable 15+ year olds who have never received an education and are often addicted to solvents. They are provided with a safe space to hang out and receive training in hygiene, education, personal coaching and life skills with the aim of recapturing their love for education and re-enrolling them in school.
‘YoUNgLIs’ are some of the most vulnerable and at-risk youth in the Smokey Mountain area where Young Focus works. Often they live alone, i.e. without parents, and some have children of their own to support as well. Staff first focus on meeting the YoUNgLIs’ basic needs of food, hygiene and health. Then staff begin to provide opportunities, space and time for personal development, discovering their talents and educating them. The objective is to recapture their vision and desire for education, and to assist them in enrolling in school again, or in finding a job training program.
Alternative Learning System
(Part of Catch-UP: a special program for school drop-outs)The ALS program is the formal ‘study acceleration’ program of the government.
It allows us to work with students who can’t re-enroll into high school as they have been out of school for too long. Students receive an official (4 year) high school certificate upon completion. The program runs for one year. After that they can continue in senior high school or they can study a vocational course.
Through ALS it is not too late for older school drop outs to build a career!
Many children in Tondo are malnourished, so Young Focus provides nutritious and healthy meals for all children who need it. In addition, teaching on nutrition, health and hygiene is given to all mothers, as well as tailored daily training for a specific group of mothers.
Children from the school drop outs programs receive a daily nutritious meal from Combat Malnutrition when they are in class. The training for mothers from preschool age onwards is a vital element to the program so that children can eat nutritious meals at home as well, and mothers have a better understanding of how to keep their children healthy. The objective of Combat Malnutrition is to eliminate malnutrition and promote healthy eating, educating mothers on how to cook good meals within their budget of around $4 USD per day for a family of 4.
Family Care & Social Support
Young Focus gives training on health, hygiene, nutrition, parenting skills, family planning, spiritual and mental health, as well as the rights of the child to all parents of Young Focus students. Engaging and empowering Parent Leaders to support YF families in the community. It is vital so that they have the skills, social support and knowledge to bring up their children in the best way possible and can support them during their studies.
Individual and group support too is given to the parents, as well as teaching them the importance of education, empowering them with knowledge on how to deal with difficult situations, and providing a support network for them to tap into.
The Social Work Team identifies personal issues our students have and family problems. Often these issues are the cause of dropping out of school so our social workers’ goal is to solve the issues. The team identifies whether children drop out of school because of academic, financial, health, behavioral reason or violation of the law. The team implements Young Focus child protection policies guide.
What now? What do I do?
There are many ways you can help children who are growing up in poverty. Please click on the link below and…